Have you ever read a piece of literature–and thought ‘how could they?” Have you ever read a true story of some of the horrors that afflicted our nation and thought, ‘this couldn’t have been real?” I have.
I remember the first time I set foot in Salem, Massachusetts. It was a sunny day, and people were feeling good. The sidewalks were vibrant. It was close to Halloween, and throngs of people laughed as they shopped, walked, and ate. It was a lovely day.
And yet there was something — something in the air. It would have been impossible not to think about all those horrors in Salem so long ago. The panic. The labeling. The hysteria. The calls of witches.
I thought, “this couldn’t be real.” But it was. I believe now. It was real. One thing that has shown me the darkness of what some of my fellow Americans are capable of is the Trump era. It’s shown that it was all real.
It is like the past reaching out over decades to return in all its treachery. And seeing what people can and do believe has been a reality check. The past must remain the past. It should have no place in our present. Michigan, 2022.
She is a high school girl and an artist. Eager to show off her talent, she designed a painted mural. It was beautiful. Awash in color, links, and blues, this mural featured people.
Students, caped individuals, bunny-headed nurses, smiling. Happy people wearing bright clothing and rainbow T-shirts. “Stay healthy,” read the flowing words of the mural. A mural to be proud of. And they became hysterical. I speak of some of the parents.
This happened this week in Grant, Michigan, where the mural proudly hung. What was the REAL meaning? A few parents demanded. Why did one figure wear a mask? Could it be satanic? A heated meeting took place.
Some parents claimed the mural was promoting witchcraft and anti-Christian beliefs. “It’s discrimination against Christian beliefs,” one man barked. “Fix their brains,” said another woman. And the artist — just a young girl — spoke up. “I put my artwork up there to make people feel welcomed,” she said softly.
Parents said she schemed to include: “sinister images.” I did not, she answered. The meeting ended with the young artist agreeing to make some changes. It was real.